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Six Cruise Ship Safety Tips

Aug 7, 2008
With cruises growing more and more popular, people are more concerned about things going wrong on their travels. That many people in one place seems like an ideal opportunity for thieves, and this combined with the risk of needing medical attention at sea can be off-putting. Still, if you pay attention to these cruise travel tips, you needn't have to rely on your cruise travel insurance to bail you out!

Watch what you eat and drink

As unlikely as it would seem, the best way of guaranteeing your health and safety on board a cruise ship is to practice a little moderation. With so many exotic food and drinks available on cruise ships, it's very easy to go overboard (hopefully not literally!) and gorge yourself on the options available. Firstly, remember that any allergies you had on land apply at sea, so watch out for these. Secondly, the affects of alcohol are that bit more pronounced at sea, thanks to the unsteadiness of the waves making accidents that little bit more likely to occur, as well as lowering your guard making you a big target for thieves.

While the water is almost certainly fine to drink on board ship, a whole different set of rules apply when you reach land - make sure you get bottled water only, and don't accept ice cubes. Another cruise travel tip worth bearing in mind is that you should keep an eye on the food when you reach land... if the hot Caribbean sun looks like it's taken its toll on any of the food, be sure to steer clear.

Keep a watchful eye on things

It should go without saying, but you have to keep a careful eye on your surroundings. When on holiday, the aim is of course to relax and unwind, but doing this lowers our awareness of things and it's very easy to let your guard drop. People on cruises are rich pickings for petty thieves, so keep your guard up and behave as you would if you were in a big city: don't walk down darkened corridors, don't accept drinks from strangers and it's best not to wander the ship alone, especially at night. Practice some vigilance and you should have no problems with cruise ship safety.

Look after you valuables

The best way of ensuring your valuables' safety on a cruise is to leave them at home in the first place! If you still insist on bringing some luxuries then treat them with care. The safe in your room should be sufficient for replaceable items, but if it's something that you simply cannot lose then use the ship's safe - this tends to be a lot more secure than the 'flimsy' room ones. And of course it goes without saying that cruise travel insurance is vital, to make sure that your valuables are covered should the worst happen.

Are you feeling lucky?

If you feel like a flutter when on board, feel free to enjoy the gambling facilities available, but remember that the money flying about is more likely than anything else to attract a criminal element. Take your winnings to the ship's safe periodically to make sure you don't have too much on you at any one time. If you win big, be sure to request an escort, and don't make a big deal of it unless you want to turn yourself into a walking cash machine for unscrupulous types.

Keep an eye on the staff

It's safe to assume that the majority of the ship's staff are hard working, above board and honest, but don't tempt fate. Wages on cruise ships can be very low, so keep your valuables locked up and out of sight. Most ships prevent staff socialising with guests, so if you are invited to a crew-only part of the ship it's best to decline. While the chances are it's just what it sounds like, it could be a ruse to get you away from the valuables in your room! Keep your guard up and watch for anything suspicious and you should have no problem maintaining your cruise ship safety.

Maintain an unofficial 'Neighbourhood Watch'

Keep a look out for suspicious behaviour and report anything that seems out of place to the staff - they can decide whether they want to take it further or not, but it's better to cause a fuss over nothing than to claim on your cruise travel insurance later.

These cruise travel tips may make you worry, but don't let them. Relax, enjoy your trip - but keep an eye on things, and you should not need to give any further thought to your cruise safety!
About the Author
Patrick Chong is the Managing Director of Journey's Travel. Their commercial travel insurance website, Insuremore, offers cruise travel insurance for families, couples and singles with a quick and easy online claims feature.
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